Thursday, December 30, 2010


This year we decided to ask my family not to get us any gifts and to just get things for the boys and in turn they asked us to do the same. We really don't need anything this year and with two boys that need a lot of things (high chairs, toys, etc) we decided this would be the best option. I'm so glad we did it. So, one of the things I got the boys for Christmas was "Sophie the Giraffe" I read about this teether on Life With the Bonhams, she talked about how much her twin boys loved her, so I had to look into it. I read the reviews on Amazon and there were over 600 reviews talking about how this was the best teether ever. So, I spluged and got one for each of the boys. They aren't cheap for teethers, but I was sold after reading all the great things people had to say about them. I received them a week or so before Christmas, so I went ahead and gave them to the boys early.

Boys, refusing to smile.

Evan looking quite bored with his Sophie. Carter seems to like her.
I love the look on Evan's face.

Carter is enjoying it, Evan looks like he's not impressed with Sophie.

Evan finally coming around.

Boys' First Christmas

We had a very, nice quiet Christmas this year. It was the boys' first Christmas but they weren't quite old enough to really know what was going on. My mom came up the Monday before Christmas to help us out with the boys and my dad and sister, Caroline, came up the Thursday before Christmas. It was so nice to just spend a lowkey weekend with the family. We didn't do too much, just sat around and talked, ate some good food, and played with Evan & Carter.

We all decided instead of exhanging gifts this year, we would just buy things for the boys and I'm glad we decided to do that. They're only 4 months old, but they got a lot of toys that they can play with when they get to be around 6 months old. They also got a ton of teethers, rattles, and some books. My parents also got each of the boys a savings bond, which will definitely come in handy later (around college time). They boys also got several wonderful gifts from other family members as well as some of our friends. We also used the money we saved by not getting gifts for my family to get the boys some toys and two new high chairs now that they're starting on rice cereal and it won't be long before they're eating solid foods.

I wanted to try and be a good host and cook Christmas dinner for our guests, but when it came down to either being a good host or having good food, I decided that everybody would probably rather have good food. So, I "let" my dad take over the Christmas meal and he got up early and prepared the turkey & stuffing for us. My mom helped with dinner, the boys, and the dishes. The turkey was delicious--much better than my Thanksgiving turkey. I made some pioneer woman mashed potatoes, broccoli and cheese casserole, rolls and some cheesecake for dessert. Since it was calling for quite a bit of snow and my dad and Caroline had to drive through 4 states to get home, they left right after Christmas dinner. It was sad to see them leave early, but they got home safe and sound and if they waited they would have had an awful drive home.

Of course I had Christmas outfits for the boys. They had an outfit for Christmas eve and Christmas day as well as Christmas pjs to wear on both nights. I love getting them outfits for all their "first" holidays and haven't been able to find "New Year's Day" outfits, but luckily their Aunt Caroline bought the boys each two New Year's Outfits. So, they'll have one to wear New Year's Eve and one to wear New Year's Day. (I've also found their valentine's day and st. patrick day outfits at Target already!)

I'm so excited for our future Christmases with Evan & Carter. I can't wait to see the excitement on their face on Christmas morning when they see what Santa brought them. It's going to be so much fun when they can open presents and play with the toys they got. Greg and I have always traveled for Christmas to either Georgia or Arizona to see our families, but it was so nice to spend Christmas in our own house this year. It makes me excited to start spending the holidays at our home as a family. I'm excited about starting our own traditions as a family that the boys can look forward to every year. I definitely want to do "25 Days of Christmas" with a new activity each day of December with the boys, as well picking a child off the "Angel Tree" to sponser for the holidays, bake cookies for Santa, etc. There's just so many things!

I posted our pictures on my Shutterfly account since we took several, probably too many to post here.

My poor mom was stuck taking all the pictures and didn't get any with the boys! :(

Aunt Caroline with Carter. She looked so cute! The rest of us just bummed it in our pjs.
Carter with Papaw (and an ornament from his Aunt Caroline)
Daddy and Evan, looking at a gift from Mamaw and Papaw
Me & the boys in front of the presents from Santa.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

First Snow

We got our first snow of the winter on December 16th. It was only an inch or two, but it was enough to get Greg out of having to be at work at 6:00am, all the employees got to come in at 10:00, which was nice. We have been total slackers and haven't got the boys any real warm winter gear yet, so we just took a couple of pictures in the doorway before Greg went to work. We have a feeling that we're going to be getting more snow, so hopefully we can get some better pictures of the boys with the snow later.


The boys got two exersaucers for Christmas. We've only had a chance to put together one and the boys love it. They're still a little small to stand real good in it and they can't turn the seat around yet, but they really like hitting all the things that make noise.

Like I said in an earlier post, I'm so behind on blogging, so I spend one evening after the boys went to bed and wrote like 10 posts to catch up for the month of December. Like always, most of them will be mostly pictures since I don't have a ton of extra time, I also scheduled the blogs to post, so some days will have two postings and there are no particular order to these posts, just trying to catch up.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

More Tummy Time

I did a post on tummy time earlier this month where I talked about how good Evan was at it and how much Carter disliked it. Well, I guess Carter realized that just because he didn't love it didn't mean that I wasn't going to make him do it. So, he finally gave in and started participating. It also helps when I put Evan in front of him, it gives him something interesting to look at. Here's some pictures on how tummy time has been going lately.

So much better than he used to do! He loves looking at Evan and Evan is starting to get interested in Carter as well.

So cute!

This picture is to show off their cute pants!! Look at the monkey on the butt. So cute.
This was the day after Christmas and they were cooing and smiling at each other during tummy time. It was precious. I think they're going to be such good friends.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Some Much Needed Help

I am so behind on blogging. Now that Christmas has passed and I have my mom here for a few more days, I'm going to try and get caught up and blog about what's been going on this month. It's been a very busy month, the boys turned 4 months old, had their first taste of rice cereal, experienced their first snow, had their first Christmas, and so much more.

It's also been a little stressful this month. The boys are still not quite sleeping through the night yet and taking care of two 4 month old boys is very exhausting. They are at that stage that they are up more and want to play, but can't sit by themselves and play with their toys yet, they need a lot of entertaining and with it being just me home during the day with them, it's exhausting. My mom left the Saturday before Thanksgiving and Greg & I were on our own for over a month before we finally called and begged her to come out and help us. Weeks of not getting much sleep and not having any help since we don't live near our families were starting to take a tole on us. We are so lucky to have some family that's willing to help us out when we ask for it. She and my dad are currently in the process of building a house, but she dropped everything and came out for 2 weeks to help us out. I know not everybody would be willing to do that, and we are so thankful for her. I'm also thankful that our boys are so sweet and happy because I don't know what I'd do if they were colicky or fussy. Now that I'm a mom, I want to be the type of mom that my mom is to me. I know that if either of our boys ever asked us for help, we'd be there for them, no questions asked. I can't imagine it any other way.

The past four months of raising babies in Virginia with no family around has really made us think about what we want and where we want to live. My family has been such an enormous help and it's so hard to see them go. We also love spending time with them and the boys absolutely adore their "Mamaw", "Papaw" and Aunt Caroline and it would be so nice if they could grow up having a close relationship with them. So, last week Greg started applying for jobs in Georgia. We have decided that our number priority is family and if we wait until it's a convenient time to move, we'll never do it. We've started looking into management companies about possibly renting the house out since we probably won't be able to sell it in this housing market, so we'll see what options will work best for us. We know it may take some time for Greg to find a job (actually, I don't think it will--he's quite the catch and any employer would be lucky to have him ;)) But, as soon as Greg gets offered something, we'll be moving down to GA and we'll figure everything out with the house and where we'll live when we get there. We both trust that everything will work out.

I certainly did not want to use this post to complain about life with the boys or be a "negative nancy" that's just not my style. Greg and I have both been being so positive, even when we're going on no sleep, but I also don't want to be like "everything is perfect, all the time, raising twin boys is a piece of cake, my life is so perfect" We realize how lucky we are but sometimes, we get exhausted and need help. Thank God for family--I don't know what we'd do without them.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake

I've been looking through my recipe magazines trying to get ideas for Christmas since my family is coming up and it's the first tim we've hosted Christmas and I saw a recipe for Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake. I love chocolate covered cherries and chocolate chip cherry ice cream, so I figured that I would love this and it didn't call for too many ingredients. So, Wednesday after Greg got home from work, I made it. I let it sit in the fridge overnight and we had some yesterday. I thought it was really delicious, plus it was super easy to make and very inexpensive since it didn't call for many ingredients.

I also bought the ingredients to make cranberry, walnut fudge this weekend. Might as well live it up now, because after Christmas, we are going on a serious diet. :(

Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake
* 1 jar (12oz) maraschino cherries
* 2 packages (8oz each) cream cheese, softened
* ½ cup sugar
* 2 eggs
* ½ cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
* 1 chocolate cookie crust (9 inches)
* 6 chocolate-covered cherries

1. Drain maraschino cherries, reserving 2 teaspoons juice. Cut cherries into quarters; set aside. In a small bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar, and reserved cherry juice. Add eggs; beat just until combined. Fold in chocolate chips and reserved cherries
2. pour into crust (crust will be full) Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until center is almost set. Cool on wire rack. Serve with chocolate-covered cherries.

Makes 6 servings--according to the recipe, but those are HUGE slices, we cut ours into 8 slices and they were still very generous servings.

Didn't take a picture of the ingredients, but here's a picture of me getting it all ready.
Carter, supervising the whole operation.

I do love these vibrating seats. I was able to make the cheesecake (which didn't take long at all) and clean up and he was good the whole time.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Uh Oh

I love "Dear Abby", I read her column everyday. I love hearing what people are complaining about and what her response is. I also love pretending I'm an advice columnist and thinking of what my response would be to the questions she gets. Monday, there was the following question:

DEAR ABBY: I just received a holiday card from some relatives. Included with it was a printed one-page newsletter describing their past year's activities. I have received similar essays from them in previous years.
Why do these writings always inflate the deeds of the writer, almost to the point of laughability? It's as if they're saying, "After dashing back from our private audiences with Queen Elizabeth and the pope, we jetted off to Rio to help our dear friends, the Buffetts, launch their new yacht, which is 6 inches longer than the QEII. And our children are doing well. The oldest is a CEO and the younger was just awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry."
To me, the holidays are a time for reflection and reaching out to those less fortunate. The last thing we need to see is an exaggerated (or fictional) account of an ego-trip from somebody who just doesn't get the meaning of the holidays. -- ORDINARY GAL IN ROCHESTER

DEAR ORDINARY GAL: Many individuals -- but not all -- feel as you do about holiday newsletters. It may help you to remember that they are not being written to you personally. The communication you received is a form of self-promotion. So with that in mind, no law says you have to read them. Because you find them upsetting, toss them as you would any other unwanted piece of advertising.

I did not realize this annoyed people. I send out newsletters every year! I love getting newsletters, almost as much as I love getting Christmas cards with pictures. How many people feel this way? I was talking with a couple of girls that are from this area and they feel the same way, but I thought maybe it was because it's a small town and everybody already knows what everybody is up to, but apparently there are people out there that hate newsletters. I wonder how many people on our Christmas card list hate receiving our newsletters? Hmm.... Well, they may be in luck because when I went to print ours today, I discovered that our printer is not working. If Greg can't get it to work, we'll just be sending out Christmas cards with letters this year.

Anyways, I love getting newsletters. I think this lady has it all wrong. Newsletters are not an ego trip to the person writing them, they are a great way to keep in touch and let everybody know in a quick and easy way how you're doing. And since you're sending out Christmas cards anyways, it's a perfect time to update everybody. I hope that everybody on our Christmas card list feels the same way.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Pictures of the Boys

I wanted to do a quick post with some pictures of the boys. They're still sweet as ever, but they've been sleeping less and less during the day, so they are keeping me very busy.

Tummy time. Evan loves tummy time and he's really good at it. He can keep his head up for the longest time. Carter on the otherhand doesn't care too much for it. This is what they look like everyday, Evan smiling and Carter refusing to lift his head. He is perfectly capable of doing it, he does it all the time while he's laying on Greg, but for some reason, he just doesn't like doing it on a blanket in the floor. I think he'll come around one of these days.

Evan trying to eat his hand but Carter decided he wanted some of that action.

Evan, staring at Carter's hand, probably thinking about trying to put it in his mouth.
Carter reaching over to grab Evan's hand.
That's when Evan takes advantage of the opportunity and grabs Carter's hand and puts it in his mouth. Those two are a mess! They sure do love their hands.
They were both so happy this morning and I had no problem catching Evan smiling, but it was not the same with Carter. It's funny because Carter is always smiling--until the camera comes out.
He's so happy, I have so many pictures that I took that day that Evan is smiling and laughing.
Evan laughing.
Proof that Carter does in fact smile, even if he's not looking at the camera.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Christmas Picture Mishaps

I’ve been trying to get some pictures of the boys that we could use on our Christmas card and let me tell you, it’s not an easy task. It’s hard enough to get a good picture of one active 3 month old, but two! It’s impossible to get them both looking at the camera and if I do catch them both looking at the camera one of them has their tongue out, is moving, has their hands in their mouth, etc. Here’s some of the pictures that will NOT be making our Christmas card this year.

Evan smiling, Carter won't even look at the camera.

Carter eating Evan.
Trying to be creative, but not working. Evan looks uncomfortable. :(
Still looks uncomfortable
Carter looks angry!
Carter looks like he's warning me not to take another picture. haha
Evan falling over. Poor thing.
Both of them have their hands in their mouths. They love their hands and this is what almost all my pictures look like, one or both of them with their hands in their mouths. Cute, but not for the christmas card.
And one picture that will be making it on the Christmas card this year. The boys first trip to see Santa.